Tag Archives: summer

Notes from the Czech countryside – June, the red month

In Czech, June is called červen, which might be related to the word červený, meaning red. Another theory is that červen could come from červ (worm), because the cochineal larvae used for making red dye were around in early summer. Apparently they are now almost all extinct. Either way, June is a red month. The red poppies are out in all the fields and some of the red fruits (cherries, strawberries) are ripe too.

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Canary Islands travel diaries: first stop, Fuerteventura

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In August we took a last-minute trip to the Canary islands, as a friend of ours was working there for a while as a digital nomad, and he invited us to join him there for some exploring. The volcanic landscape of the islands is amazing, and there are also lots of beaches for swimming and watersports. We visited Fuerteventura, Lanzerote and Gran Canaria, all of which had very different atmospheres. I’ll start with some travel notes from our first stop, Fuerteventura. Continue reading

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #23 – 2 in 1

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We’re now in the good part of summer where it’s warm enough to wear a skirt or shorts almost every day. It feels like summer is just beginning as time goes so quickly, so I was a bit disconcerted to realize that we’re heading into our last month of summer now that it’s almost August. We’ve had a lot of unsettling news lately, what with Brexit, various terror attacks across the world, and the attempted coup in Turkey. Crazy times. However, here are some of the good moments from the last two weeks for the Weekly Small Pleasures blog event. From small pleasures from far away in New Zealand, you can also check out Thistles and Kiwis! Continue reading

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Weekly Small Pleasures #22 – Summer in the city

Somehow the middle of the week is working out as a better time for me to publish these posts, so here is another Thursday-to-Thursday week’s worth of small pleasures. Thanks again to A New Life Wandering for hosting Weekly Small Pleasures. This week was one of those weeks where small pleasures were mixed with small annoyances and disappointments! Such is life. Continue reading

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #21 – Summer days

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Well, June disappeared quickly, didn’t it! I have missed quite a few weeks of Weekly Small Pleasures, as there have been quite a few meetings and a lot of work this month. So one of this week’s small pleasures is getting the opportunity to participate in this blog event again this week 🙂 Thanks to Mani for being so diligent and keeping this blog event running all this time!

Here were this week’s small pleasures:

1.Summer weather. In South Africa I took sun for granted most of the time, but living through Berlin winters has taught me to appreciate every sliver of it. We’re having a lot of good, sunny weather this year. Continue reading

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Watersports and beaches at Müggelsee

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Berlin is in a region of many lakes, and is fortunate to have lakes both within the city as well as in the surrounding countryside of Brandenburg. Today we visited Müggelsee again, a big lake in the south-east of Berlin, in the Treptow-Köpenick district, surrounded by the suburbs of Freidrichshagen, Rahnsdorf, Köpenick and Muggelheim. It is so lovely there that I thought I would share some photographs. Continue reading

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #7 – Summer flowers

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Two weekends ago we took a trip to the Baltic coast, and last week we were in Spain for four days. Apart from these great weekend trips, it has been all work work work. But in the weekend, although I also had to go to work for a bit, we had the opportunity to go for a walk in the park near where I used to live, where we enjoyed the summer flowers. This afternoon we also got to relax and BBQ in the garden of a friend-of-a-friend in the outskirts of Berlin. When you live in an apartment in Berlin, like many, it’s always a luxury to relax outside in a garden. Here are some pictures of the summer flowers that are out at the moment in Berlin. To see what others have been up to this week, check out the Weekly Small Pleasures blog event.

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Middle Europe Weekly Small Pleasures #6 – Summer days

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On the beach in Boltenhagen

This week a heatwave struck Europe, and the summer we had been longing for suddenly struck full force! We’d booked tickets in advance to go and visit my uncle and aunt who were on a three week holiday by the Baltic sea (Ostsee) in  Boltenhagen, but had a three hour travail trying to catch the train out of Berlin because so many people had flooded to the station to escape to the coast that we could not get on the train with our bicycles. However, after a long wait and a detour, we finally made it to the coast and countryside of the Bundesland (province) Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and enjoyed a weekend there catching up with family, cycling, swimming and walking around. More about that later, but in the meanwhile here are a few of the highlights of the week. Join the blog event Weekly Small Pleasures to share your own!

1) It’s been drier than usual for this time of year, in fact, many farms in Brandenburg have been suffering from lack of rain. In Czech, the rivers are also very low at the moment. During the weekend after the extremely high temperatures there were thunderstorms both Saturday and Sunday evening, so at least that brought some rain. I’m not sure if it was just a coincidence or if it was related to the dryness and then the two weeks of cool weather we had before the heat, but I found a beautiful leaf in Berlin last Monday morning – maybe from a confused tree!

2) A friend organized a BBQ in the park on Thursday evening. It was so relaxing to spend a summer’s night outdoors that it felt almost like a Friday.

3) On Friday we went to Prater biergarten with some friends. i really like it there – it’s full so it has a good atmosphere but there always seems to be somewhere to sit. My friend B and I both had a classic Berlin drink: Berliner Weisse (wheat beer) mixed with  red (raspberry) or green (Waldmeister) syrup. It’s great and refreshing for those who prefer something sweet to a more bitter beer!

4) The strawberries on our balcony are still yielding fruit!

5) I didn’t know this before I moved to Berlin, but there is a big Turkish community here. In many neighbourhoods you can find shops selling delicious Turkish sweets, including baklava. I don’t know the names of all of the different varieties, but they are all variants of sweet pastries containing nuts such as pistachio or walnuts.

6) And to the seaside! About 4 hours from Berlin on the train, but so worth it.

Have a good week!

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